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[1990-06-12-NJPW] Big Van Vader vs Stan Hansen

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I never thought I could be this bored by a match between these two, but God, it dragged on forever. Stan Hansen stalling on the outside? Vader lying on the mat and working holds? For 22 minutes? And we still got a shitty, inconclusive finish. This made me appreciate what they did in the eye match that much more.

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Yep. I'm glad this is on there because it's two important wrestlers, and important because it's interpromotional and for a title. There are times where the yearbooks need to show something that it's a home run because it's important. Also... folks need to know that Hansen and Vader weren't bullet proof as workers in this period.

 

John

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I liked this a lot more than Childs and jdw, but I do understand where they're coming from. It's not at the level you'd hope it to be because the match was too long, but there is some really great stuff in this match. Vader and Hansen throwing furniture and potatoes at each other worked for me. There is a little too much laying on the mat, but when Vader re-takes the advantage from Hansen, the match picks up again and builds to a good conclusion. I don't try to convince anyone that it's a great match, but it's not a total miss either. There was a really strong 10-15 minute match buried in a 22-minute one. It's like we got the Director's Cut of a great match that just watered it down.

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The Triple Crown Champion challenging for the IWGP Heavyweight title? Why is this match not well-known (to my knowledge)? The lack of lost eyeballs? Anyway, it's a Hansen match that's not in All-Japan. The ring announcer intro may as well have gone, "This contest is scheduled for one fall with a bullshit finish." That's just sort of a basic prerequisite.

 

And I thought this was pretty awesome and the match of the night. A super-hot start with furniture being thrown all over the place and Vader taking a spectacular pop-up bump off the Lariat. I could watch these two pound the crap out of each other all day. I didn't get any stalling vibe from Hansen--I thought his bailing out fit in quite well considering he was in the rare position of facing someone whom he couldn't bully around. If anything they probably do go outside one time too many. Brawls outside the ring being a near-fall as they are in Japan, it's sort of an unfair tease considering we were getting a no-decision anyway.

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I am in the Loss/Peter camp and thought this really bordered on being a great match and would be with some editing of about 3-4 minutes. The inconclusive finish was predictable and actually came off more organically then most of those do. This match did have a lot of restarts but the sequences in between with the brawling and stiff shots made up for the odd structure in my mind. I really liked this New Japan card as a whole.

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I thought this was the worse of all their matches together. If we trimmed the fat off it we would have had a good match. Still too much crap dragged it down. Still it had moments and I would classify it as solid, but dissapointed.

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More Hansen in NJPW. We get a chair and table throwing contest to start. Vader is checking with the referee to make sure his eye hasn’t popped out again. We get more blood as Hansen uses a chair to Vader’s face. Lots of blood on this show. Hansen starts punching and elbowing Vader’s face. They sure do go outside the ring a lot which was being overdone. Part of me was thinking maybe we get a finish but we don’t as Hansen gets himself DQ’d in the end. Liked it but wish they cut done on repeatedly going outside the ring. Also needed a better finish but that wasn't happening.

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I think the finish was really flat and that might leave people with a more negative view of it than it deserves. Overall I thought it was quite a solid Dome match and hey it's still Hansen and Vader beating the crap out of each other for 20m.

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Okay, so my falling asleep during this match wasn't just me being tired. I did like parts of this as it was nice and violent, but too long.

 

Just as an aside, but did Hansen in 1990 have, from a kayfabe standpoint, one of the best years ever? He headlined shows for WCW and New Japan, won the US title, wrestled Hulk Hogan (just after his first peak) in the main event of a show that did huge business at the Tokyo Dome, all while headlining all year for All Japan and getting a run as Triple Crown champ. Even beyond his ring work being mostly superb, that's a damned good year.

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Totally opposite feelings from everyone on this. I liked they kept teasing the CO/DCO due to that being the finish of the 2/90 match. The big pop every time they rolled back in. They had to do an indecisive finish, what else? I think this is much better than the February match and peoples feelings about this match echo mine about that one.

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This match was definitely worked differently, as each man now knew after their February bout that they couldn't simply run the other over and come out with a win. So they took it to the mat for a while to try and wear each other out, but that didn't work either, so they went right back to beating each other senseless. Each shot meant something, as did the strength spots where each man slammed the other and Hansen echoed Dynamite Kid with a snap suplex. In the end, Hansen was desperate to get out with his hide, so he brought out the bullrope and that was it.

 

Was it the classic that the February match was? No, but would that match have been a classic if Vader hadn't lost his eye? It's hard to tell. Each man worked a more strategic match here, and while we all enjoy two big guys beating each other to death, the idea of wrestling is to do whatever you can to score a three-count, and sometimes that involves taking your opponent to the mat and laying on him. I like the intentional blade job by Vader around the eye that he lost, as it told the Tokyo fans that what happened once could very well happen again. Luckily for Leon, it didn't.

 

These two probably had a better match in them, but what we got was still excellent. Not enough to crack my top three, but a treat nonetheless.

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So whenever Vader tells the eye story, it's always that Hansen hits him in the head with the bullrope when he's coming to the ring, which doesn't happen in that match, but happens here, although Vader still has the helmet on, he motions to his eye several times after he takes it off in this one. I wonder if he just has the matches confused. Anyway, more double juice here, and again, this is enhanced by the previous wild matches, but I agree with others here, it's just a bit too long. Not bothered by the finish, since really there's not a lot you can do in the situation, but a clear step down from the February match.

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A little long, but I can't help but see the logic in garreta's thinking. Both guys know they can't plow the other over, so they do a little more weardown type stuff before going back to trying to beat each other senseless.

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